A Good Night's Rest Could Help Keep Weight Down

Thursday, July 21, 2011

A good night’s sleep is beneficial to your health and a new study shows it may also help you with keeping unwanted weight down. The study, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, shows that sleep deprived people consume more food, but don’t burn the extra calories.

The study involved about 30 middle-aged men and women, all with about the same height and weight. They slept and lived in a research center for two separate five-night stints. During one of the visits, the researchers let the participants sleep for nine hours each night. On the other visit, they had only four hours of sleep. Both times, the participants had a strict diet for the first four days and then had permission to eat whatever they wanted on the final day.

The test showed that it didn’t matter which sleep schedule was in effect, a similar amount of calories were burned per day. The participants consumed about 2,500 calories when they were well-rested and could eat much as they wanted. After a week of sleep restriction, they consumed 2,800 calories on the final day – a 300 calorie increase.

Several recent studies have examined the relationship between sleep deprivation and weight gain. The findings show there is a possibility that amount of sleep can cause influence weight.

Marie-Pierre St-Onge, principle researcher at the New York Obesity Research Center at St. Luke’s Roosevelt Hospital, suggests you should get lots of rest if you are trying to maintain your weight. Schedule at least 7 to 8 hours per night for sleep and make sleep a priority and you may gain an edge against weight gain.

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